Bell Fund Governing Document

1. The fund shall be known as Southwell and Nottingham Diocesan Guild of Church Bell Ringers Bell Fund (the ‘Fund’) and shall be registered as a charity.

2. The objectives of the Fund shall be to assist the Church within the Southwell and Nottingham Diocese by providing financial assistance towards the cost of:

a. Refurbishment, overhaul, repair and improvement of existing rings of bells;
b. Restoration of existing rings of bells;
c. Preservation of bells and fittings from redundant churches, and other sites, to          enable re-use;
d. Augmentation of existing, and the provision of new, rings of bells; and
e. Works which improve the ease of handling of rings of bells or improve the internal or external sound.

3. The Fund may take any reasonable action for the furtherance of its objectives, including the acquisition, removal and storage of bells, fittings and frames.

4. Resident and Honorary Life Members for the time being of the Southwell and Nottingham Diocesan Guild of Church Bell Ringers (the ‘Guild’) shall be Members of the Fund (‘Members’).

5. Administration

a. The Fund shall be administered by three Trustees, two of whom shall form a quorum when meeting. At least two of the Trustees shall be elected by the Members and, unless the Members decide otherwise, the Guild Chairman shall normally be the third.

b. All Trustees shall retire annually at the Annual General Meeting but be eligible for further terms. All nominations for the elected Trustees, including those of retiring Trustees seeking further terms, shall be made in writing to the Secretary, proposed and seconded, no less than six weeks in advance of the meeting at which the election is being held.

c. In the event of fewer than two nominations being made, the Trustees shall have the power to make nominations. If more than two nominations are received, election shall be by secret ballot, the successful candidates being those with the highest number of votes by Members present.

d. The Trustees may invite a member of the Fund to serve as secretary (the ‘Secretary’) to assist them in the administration of the fund. The Trustees may take advice on projects from Guild Bell Consultants, companies, the Diocesan Bell Adviser and other individuals. Such advice will not be binding on the Trustees. The Trustees shall elect a chairman who will preside over Trustee meetings.

e. The Trustees will normally invite the Treasurer of the Guild to act as treasurer for the Fund (the ‘Treasurer’).

f. Applications for grants shall normally be made to the Trustees through the Secretary who will notify the applicant of the Trustees’ decision. No grant shall be paid until the work has been completed. If the work is not completed within two years of the grant being approved, a fresh application will be required.

6. Funds

a. Such bank accounts as may be required shall be opened in the name of the Fund. All withdrawals from the Fund must be authorised by two of the Trustees.

b. Any monies not required for the immediate purposes of the Fund shall be invested to the benefit of the Fund in any manner the Trustees may think fit. Any investments must be made in the names of all the Trustees.

c. The Fund shall have the power to raise funds by any means it sees fit, so long as permanent trading is not engaged in.

d. The Trustees have the authority to dispose of bells, fittings or frames if attempts at rehousing have proved unsuccessful, provided any proceeds from disposal are invested in the Fund

e. The Trustees shall take out such insurance as they deem appropriate.

f. No grant to any Church outside the Diocese of Southwell and Nottingham may be made, without the approval of the Annual Meeting of the Fund.

7. Meetings

a. There shall be an annual general meeting of Members (‘Annual General Meeting’) which shall be held at the annual meeting of the Guild and one of Trustees (normally the Guild Chairman) shall chair the meeting. In the event of a conflict of interest the Members will elect a Chair by simple majority on the day.

b. A Fund Special General Meeting may be called by either the Trustees or be requested in writing to the Secretary by at least 20 Members.

8. Accounts and reports

a. The Treasurer shall prepare a balance sheet as at December 31st in each year and an income and expenditure account for the year ending on that date. The accounts shall be examined by an independent examiner (the ‘Examiner’) and presented to the Members at the next Annual Meeting.

b. The Secretary will prepare a report to the membership on the Fund’s activity for the year covered by the annual accounts.

c. The accounts and the Secretary’s report shall be published and made available to the Members.

d. The Examiner shall be appointed by the Trustees and the appointment shall be approved at a general meeting of the Fund.

9. No alteration or addition shall be made to this Governing Document, except at the Fund Annual General Meeting or a Special General Meeting. Notices of such alterations and the date and place of the Fund meeting at which they are to be proposed shall be published in the printed version of ‘The Ringing World’, at least one calendar month before the meeting date and the text of such alterations shall be published on the Guild website. Alterations to this Governing Document shall require a two thirds majority of those Members present and eligible to vote.

10. Dissolution of the Fund. A decision to dissolve the Fund may be taken only at a general meeting of the Members. The net assets of the Fund shall then be disposed of either to:

a. Any successor, charitable body or bodies with similar objects, covering all or part of the same geographical area.
b. Failing that, to such charitable Bell Funds as the Members may select.

11. No alteration shall be made to this Governing Document which shall have the effect of the Fund ceasing to be a charity.